Causes of Clutter

Many people so desperately desire order and organization in their lives, but it somehow eludes them.  The underlying causes still need to be addressed.  And guess what?  You are not to blame!

Many people so desperately desire order and organization in their lives, but it somehow eludes them… Anyone can come in your home and “clean up” for you, but the underlying causes are what truly prevent you from acquiring a sane space… And guess what? You are not to blame!

1. A system problem: Issues that result from poor systems

  • Everything should have a home. You can’t put it away if it doesn’t live somewhere!
  • A system that is too complicated to maintain. Do what feels right… you’re more likely to stick with it.
  • Too much stuff. Start off by purging unused, broken, ugly, unnecessary and old items. If you aren’t using it, consider letting it go.
  • Poor storage. Don’t be distracted by pretty baskets and organizing systems. Purchase products ONLY after you know what needs to be stored in the first place. Otherwise you end up with a basket that isn’t quite big enough.


2. Emotional obstacles: Clutter that accumulates because there is a memory attached

  • A need for “stuff”.  Some people just need to be surrounded by items. Their belongings literally make them feel abundant.
  • Sentimental attachment.  Many of our memories are associated with physical items. We see an old dance trophy and it brings you back to a day when you belonged to something and were more agile.  It’s ok to hold on to some things, but you must limit what you save, otherwise all the organizing in the world will not solve your clutter issues.
  • Situational changes. Dealing with a recent divorce, death, new baby or office relocation can cause a tailspin of emotions and other priorities that breakdown any system…even if you had a good system in place.


3. Life’s Realities:  Outside forces that limit your ability to stay organized

  • Family, children, co-workers… you get the picture. Bring to their attention what their contribution to the clutter is costing them.  Lost toys? Lost cell phone?
  • Too much to do… In our fast paced world, we tend to try to cram 36 hours into a 24 hour day. The reality…it’s just not possible. Decide if doing your organizing is a priority and if it’s feasible for you to accomplish it. If not, consider hiring an outside service. In the long run, this will save you time and money.

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.


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